Closure is NOT management


Founding Member
Local Sheriff wants to CLOSE Black Bear Pass in Colorado .

The San Miguel County sheriff is calling for Black Bear Pass to be closed to vehicles. He says a rescue tied up the department’s resources.
The sheriff says an elderly couple was traveling through the pass near Telluride in an off-road vehicle.
The embankment gave way and their vehicle rolled 75 yards down a canyon. Ten search and rescue crews were called to help and the sheriff says this leaves the department short-handed.
The couple is going to be okay.
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Once again... govt. Closing lands for the sake of "management". Its so depressing. Its things like this that make me want to wave the white flag when it comes to keeping public lands open to the public. I'll keep fighting the good fight, but this is depressing.


Founding Member
If the damn sheep would just stay at home and let the enlightened folks go into the wilderness to take photos and videos to show on the screens while we euthanize them and process them into Soylent Green the world would be better off.

Sometimes bad things happen to good folks. Couldn't get the article to load, but from what you said Bob it sounds like these folks were unlucky to have the road give way. Not screwing around and tossing BudLight cans out on the trail. Shame to close trails because there is no money left after paying for other services.
My first trip down Black Bear I followed an elderly man (driving) and his wife (reading a paperback) in a stock looking Jeep Cherokee. I was in my modified FJ. He was making 2 point turns in the tightest switchbacks, I was making 3 point turns. Neither of us had spotters (except for my shorts) :dunno


Great report in regards to what actually happened. It still doesn't warrant any sort of shutdown. It only goes to show the helpfulness of the ones who use the trail and how accidents can be successfully expedited with the help of the community in conjunction with local authorities. If anything, that should have been put in the light and applauded rather than a straight shutdown because of an accident.

"He says a rescue tied up the department’s resources."

If you've got SAR tying up department resources, shouldn't the department have an allocated unit for this purpose, or even have a volunteer unit? I'm still at a loss as to why this shutdown was even proposed in the first place. I understand budgets in small towns and all, but this is a well trafficked tourist area. There shouldn't even be a tie up in department resources. If a well-coordinated, short and successful rescue ties up your resources, then you've got bigger problems up top and you need to restructure your budget and personnel... just saying.
We were there and I've written article on what ACTUALLY happened on Black Bear Pass. Read it here and please share with everyone because this needs to be clarified as it was a true team effort by recreationalists etc. who helped make this a successful rescue:
Nicely written. I hope you've sent a signed copy to the local sheriff! No surprise with the effort of Rising Sun and the rest of you there on scene. Send a copy to AARL as well to promote ham usage for emergency communication!


Founding Member
Great article and report. It's great to see the community work together. Maybe the Sheriff department should take a few lessons from this group.
Thanks everyone and agreed 100%. A copy was sent to the Sheriff and Stan has a planned phone call with him soon. Hopefully any discussion of closure is negated and we can instead discuss working together to ensure safe, responsible travel while continuing to help the local communities who benefit from those who visit them.
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